Brake pedal lever arm interference - Kia Niro Forum
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-02-2017, 09:43 PM Thread Starter
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Unhappy Brake pedal lever arm interference

Hi all,

I got my new Kia Niro EX on lease 2 weeks ago and I love it so far, except for two issues I'm having.

1. The brake pedal lever arm always gets in the way of my shoe when I'm switching from the throttle pedal to the brake because of the way it curves to the right before connecting to the master cylinder through the engine wall. It's sometimes dangerous and scary because I can't hit the brake when my foot is stuck on the lever. Who thought of this horrible design? They could have moved the lever or made a shape that allowed clearance of a shoe.

2. Overall, in ECO mode, the throttle pedal is extremely mushy, so much that it's very tiring and achy on my leg to mash the pedal just to get the vehicle to move in city driving. It shouldn't require that much force, even if the gear ratios are designed for fuel economy vs Sport mode. My previous car (Honda Insight) had a "normal" mode besides Eco and Sport that had a normal sensitivity, is there something adjustable on this car?

What can be done about these two issues? The first issue is a safety hazard and the second is a comfort one. See images below (old pedal photo is a 2003 Lincoln Aviator, which doesn't have the problem).
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-02-2017, 10:07 PM
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Never had a problem with either --- guess can't help you.
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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-02-2017, 11:26 PM
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I've never had a problem with the brake pedal, and I have a size 13 shoe! I can't imagine how you can get from the front of the gas pedal to the back of the brake pedal when moving your foot. Unless you were dragging your foot sideways. There might be a problem with it, whatever dealer you leased from should be able to look at it.
The throttle is a little different in Eco mode, also having a dual clutch vs. torque converter on transmission makes it come from a stop a little different, I believe. I've gotten used to it, to me it was like learning the characteristics of any new car.
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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-03-2017, 08:55 AM
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A Niro is never going to give you big boost in city driving. If you need to gun it, it isn't the right vehicle for you. You need a vehicle with 200+ horsepower and lbs of torque.
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-03-2017, 02:25 PM
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I agree that the gas pedal is "mushy" in Eco Mode and not too bad in Sport mode. At a stop light, if I have no traffic behind me and I have time on my hands, I leave it in Eco Mode and take off smoothly. If there is traffic behind, I move it over to Sport mode and get the added boost of higher shift points, then switch it back eco mode when up to speed. I mostly have no traffic and time on my hands and is probably the reason why I am averaging around 60 MPG.
I also find that in Eco mode the car loses speed easily on any up hill while trying to add some gas to maintain speed, but it seems like you have to give it a lot of gas relative to my brain/foot ratio from my former cars. What I find I have to do is at the bottom of the hill I move the shifter to sport mode and this helps greatly. After the crest, I just move it back to Eco mode. It is a car that I find I have to work at to drive it and keep up with traffic, kind of like a low powered standard shift car.
Also, here are my observations of using Sport mode: YMMV
1. When moving the shifter to Sport mode, you always get the "D" switching to a "5" displayed, no matter how fast you are going. I guess the "5" is close to looking like an "S".
2. If left alone, the car will have higher shift points, won't as easily go into "EV" only mode and the "5" will always be displayed.
3. If you manually up or down shift, the car will then display the correct gear that the transmission is in.
4. Not totally sure on this one but, if you are at a stop light and switch to Sport mode and then down shift, the "1" will be displayed. When you take off, the car will stay in first gear until you manually up shift it to "2". I tried to let the car shift itself but, the engine was revving so high I didn't want to let it go any higher before I manually up shifted. Not sure if this is true for all the gears.

Hope this helps you.
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-04-2017, 09:29 AM
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Guess it all depends on your desires - I'm not a performance driver and never had a problem keeping up, taking off, going uphill.

That said, yes have to mash the gas pedal a bit more than I am use to at times. Mostly, just take off slow and easy. Older and hopefully more sense now (at 79 yr old) than when I was 16 to 30 yr old. NOTE: I said hopefully.

I do get my thrills on 2 wheeler (not crazy fast as not on a superbike, but it's a thrill beyond any car I would say -LOVE the lean).
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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-04-2017, 03:03 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks BlueEX for your observations - those exactly mirror my own. I am glad I wasn't the only one who noticed the mushiness of the pedal and that the Niro takes a bit more work to drive than a typical automatic trans car. Still, I really enjoy the car.

I have discovered what the actual culprit is regarding the pedal interference. It's not actually the pedal lever itself, it's a strange steel bar that protrudes from the underside of the steering wheel area. Can anyone positively identify this bar, which isn't attached to anything on the brake pedal? I have never seen an object like this in any other vehicle.

See picture.
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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-21-2017, 08:43 PM Thread Starter
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Has anyone gotten more information? Does anyone have pictures of their vehicles to confirm that they have the same device?
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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-26-2017, 05:05 PM
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Looks the same on my EX (see attached). Just returned from a 2,500 mile trip (working up a post) and never noticed any interference from that curved bar. I wear men's 10.5, but was barefoot for some of the time. Does it help to slide the seat back a bit so your heal is further away from the accelerator?
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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-04-2017, 03:49 PM Thread Starter
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A bad new story today.

I was driving on the highway when suddenly I needed to accelerate and change lanes due to an unexpected slowdown of the vehicles in my lane right ahead.

Upon having to lift my foot up quickly, my size 11 foot and shoe contacted the metal bar above the pedal and was restricted from reaching the accelerator fast enough. This almost caused me to be impacted by the vehicle speeding by in the lane to which I was moving into from behind, because I was planning on rapidly accelerating to merge into the faster lane traffic.

Fortunately no collision occurred. The autonomous emergency brake began to sound its alarm though.

What can be done? I am out of ideas short of taking a Sawzall and cutting off the bar. This is a huge safety hazard and I can potentially see a lawsuit in the years coming where it's presence does cause a colllision. No other vehicle I have seen has this.
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